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Re: the mystery shuts up, and can see and hear no more...

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  • nothing@theabsurd.com
    Dear Sir Duard simplifier extraordinaire, It always seems to,
    Message 1 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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      Dear Sir 'Duard simplifier extraordinaire,

      <<I have been following this discussion and this has really
      gotten to the point of absurdity.>>

      It always seems to, to me...

      << So what if you cant know every thought and innuendo of the
      author...If an author says something in print then that is what is
      of importance... All of that is valid and is part of the manner in
      which one might take into consideration an author's
      pronouncements, but surely "mystery" with respect to the author
      is going too far.>>

      If you can't know every thought and innuendo, some of the
      author's meaning is necessarily hidden or 'mysterious.' As
      words are perhaps sometimes adequate -- yet more often
      inexact vehicles of meaning (we have examined this before in
      color -- where you said red was red, but I pointed out that red is
      not inate, it is a measure which someone -- or some group of
      someones -- decided on, and which there can be variance from
      in experience. Of course none of that set you wavering). And
      further, meaning...is it entirely the author's, or is it flecked with
      hints of other things the author has read and experienced and/or
      heard -- whether directly attributable or not? And then might word
      choice be affected, at times containing the author's meaning,
      and at others containing internal referants -- which perhaps even
      the author may be unaware? (And I will do us all the favor of not
      getting into genetic transfer of thought, experience and idea.)

      Quite honestly I wish I could take everything as cut and dried and
      hang it all neatly on my clothes-line. But to pretend I know what
      the author meant is pretentious -- even if I do a very long study of
      his work, life, etc.. The only thing I can think I know is what I think
      I am reading, and how my experience reflects on my
      interpretation of what it seems to me the author was doing, and
      even that may be pushing it (depending on how absurd you want
      to get). and in the long run, what of the thing which the author
      meant? Perhaps the writing has meaning for me which is far
      more interesting than whatever the intent was (if either of those
      can be defined). Should I shun what I think and seek out the idea
      of the author which I can never attain? And should I attain it
      (though I think it impossible) there I have grabbed the flag on the
      mountain, and no one cares, knows, agrees or even
      acknowledges...so the purpose is exactly what? Why is the
      author important at all?

      I can't help but reduce it to the absurd...It just happens.

      Reduxio
      -----------
    • nothing@theabsurd.com
      Message 2 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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        << 1) there have to be some assumptions to do any work ... until
        such times when the assumptions do not work in some new or
        special cases, then u just admit the limitation of those
        assumptions. but that doesn't mean those assumptions are
        entirely useless ... well, well, this is not related to the existential, i
        suppose?! >>

        I think it is related.

        If one tries not to make assumptions, where does that lead?

        ------------------------
      • Eduard Alf
        If you can t know every thought and innuendo, some of the author s meaning is necessarily hidden or mysterious. that is true, but as james implied, there is
        Message 3 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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          "If you can't know every thought and innuendo,
          some of the author's meaning is necessarily hidden
          or 'mysterious."

          that is true, but as james implied, there is point
          at which you have to get off the pot and deal with
          what the author actually said, rather than to try
          to delve forever into the multitude of layers of
          the "mysterious". I do not suggest that there can
          not be a further level of understanding, to either
          accept, reject, or amend the statement. But this
          reduction to absurdity does not provide any
          benefit to the discussion.

          As you say "I can't help but reduce it to the
          absurd...It just happens." I am finding this not
          only frustrating but quite pointless.

          eduard



          -----Original Message-----
          From: nothing@...
          [mailto:nothing@...]
          Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 9:51 AM
          To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [existlist] Re: the mystery shuts up, and
          can see and hear no
          more...


          Dear Sir 'Duard simplifier extraordinaire,

          <<I have been following this discussion and this
          has really
          gotten to the point of absurdity.>>

          It always seems to, to me...

          << So what if you cant know every thought and
          innuendo of the
          author...If an author says something in print then
          that is what is
          of importance... All of that is valid and is part
          of the manner in
          which one might take into consideration an
          author's
          pronouncements, but surely "mystery" with respect
          to the author
          is going too far.>>

          If you can't know every thought and innuendo, some
          of the
          author's meaning is necessarily hidden or
          'mysterious.' As
          words are perhaps sometimes adequate -- yet more
          often
          inexact vehicles of meaning (we have examined this
          before in
          color -- where you said red was red, but I pointed
          out that red is
          not inate, it is a measure which someone -- or
          some group of
          someones -- decided on, and which there can be
          variance from
          in experience. Of course none of that set you
          wavering). And
          further, meaning...is it entirely the author's, or
          is it flecked with
          hints of other things the author has read and
          experienced and/or
          heard -- whether directly attributable or not? And
          then might word
          choice be affected, at times containing the
          author's meaning,
          and at others containing internal referants --
          which perhaps even
          the author may be unaware? (And I will do us all
          the favor of not
          getting into genetic transfer of thought,
          experience and idea.)

          Quite honestly I wish I could take everything as
          cut and dried and
          hang it all neatly on my clothes-line. But to
          pretend I know what
          the author meant is pretentious -- even if I do a
          very long study of
          his work, life, etc.. The only thing I can think I
          know is what I think
          I am reading, and how my experience reflects on my
          interpretation of what it seems to me the author
          was doing, and
          even that may be pushing it (depending on how
          absurd you want
          to get). and in the long run, what of the thing
          which the author
          meant? Perhaps the writing has meaning for me
          which is far
          more interesting than whatever the intent was (if
          either of those
          can be defined). Should I shun what I think and
          seek out the idea
          of the author which I can never attain? And should
          I attain it
          (though I think it impossible) there I have
          grabbed the flag on the
          mountain, and no one cares, knows, agrees or even
          acknowledges...so the purpose is exactly what? Why
          is the
          author important at all?

          I can't help but reduce it to the absurd...It just
          happens.

          Reduxio
          -----------


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        • nothing@theabsurd.com
          Message 4 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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            << that is true, but as james implied, there is point at which you
            have to get off the pot and deal with what the author actually said
            >>

            I am sorry but I don't believe it is true that what the author intends
            makes any difference. And to some extent, the reader would not
            be required to 'deal' with anything. One would assume that be
            the act of reading one is involving themselves with words only --
            NOT that they give a hoot what the author intends.

            << But this reduction to absurdity does not provide any benefit to
            the discussion...As you say "I can't help but reduce it to the
            absurd...It just happens." I am finding this not only frustrating but
            quite pointless.>>

            So I am asked to follow the 'Duard-o-meter to the magical land of
            benefit? I must say, I am also not convinced that there can be a
            benefit to discussion. I'm afraid I am attached to the hip of
            frivolity, or that I cannot judge benefit. If you could explain to me
            just once what 'beneficial' is and how one goes about having a
            'productive' discussion, I would be grateful, because then I can
            achieve better things.

            I suppose saying that my intended contributions are pointless is
            somehow a benefit? And I suppose i should see your
            suggestion as beneficial and flag my own, logically, as
            detriment? And the suggestion is that my repeatedly absurd
            posts are nothing but pests on the flystrip as it were? And
            everyone who utters here utters for purpose -- as such great
            musings about ducks and mountains I have heard that seem to
            this limp chimp to have no tangent to the discussion at all?
            Forgive me for responding ... it obviously was and is
            inconsiderate. I should type to myself and not post as I can never
            gauge the worth before I do, and I would assume, as I am
            unable to do so, I should assume the restraint will be more
            healthy than endulgence -- and therefore not saying anything at
            all would be the greater benefit?

            Sounds absurd to me...shutting up benefits the discussion? If
            we all shut up, what a wonderful discussion we would have as
            we might all benefit the more — another scoop of benefit for
            every mouth that closes! The less we say, the better the
            discussion?!

            Please clarify, as I do not have your wealth of vision.

            clueless in blindness and hock
            -------------------------------------------
          • james tan
            have not been following this tread closely, but let me just throw in my two cents worth. of course it is not meant to be factual , only my interpretation, & i
            Message 5 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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              have not been following this tread closely, but let me just throw in my two
              cents worth. of course it is not meant to be 'factual', only my
              interpretation, & i can't seems to see anything beyond my own perception or
              interpretation, & i've no way to guarantee my perception is the same as
              'reality'. as for reader reading a text by an author: as for scientific
              reading, it is paramount that clarity of meaning is maintained at all time,
              so that any disagreement is only a disagreement of the hypothesis, & not on
              what does the hypothesis says. before one can reject or fail to reject any
              hypothesis, it is assumed that one knows what the hypothesis is saying in
              the first place. aspects of the hypothesis is operationalized & measurable
              (a number can be attached to it). there is no ambiguity of meaning here. as
              for literary reading, things are not so clear cut, i think. some authors are
              pretty straightforward, such as charles dicken, but some are very ambiguous,
              such as kafka. as for me, i am always puzzled by what kafka was 'really'
              trying to say, & end up as confused as the characters inside his novels,
              such as "the trial", "the castle", etc. there are social critique novel,
              such as dickens, orwell or jane austen, existentialist novelist such as
              camus & dostoyevski, phenomenologist such as sartre, etc, etc, but i can
              never quite put my finger on kafka. kafka's mystery did not shut up, & most
              probably will never; there is a mysterious horizons he seemed compelled to
              search, but never quite get it, & like the land surveyor (in "the castle")
              tried to measure, hence comprehend, the horizons of truth. there is a
              certain richness in the possibilities to interpret his works, so that it
              allows various perspectives on it. in the end, whether eduard or nothing
              read it, both are legitimate in their interpretation, because quite apart
              from the key chosen to read it or just because of the very choice that the
              interpretation makes, it reveals itself to be the secret way of bringing an
              author close to one's inner world. his texts challenges the readers to
              understand it on a level that goes beyond the simple & immediate reading.
              kafka speaks in parables & metaphors, if only because any attempts to
              describe it directly is bound to fail. words block our paths. truth changes
              into deceit just as soon as one tries to interpret it rationally, to put
              into a objective framework. truth is subjectivity. illusion is thick. the
              problem comes when one attempts to impose the paradigm of science onto
              everything else, but it doesn't work because reality is much richer than
              what that framework allows. man need models, frameworks, or paradigm to
              understand the world or reality, & although they are useful in certain
              respects, they are inherently limited, & it is ridiculous & blind to make
              sweeping judgment about reality based on those models. if one is not blind,
              one always admits one's strength together with one's limitation. there are
              no facts, only interpretations, to quote nietzsche. this goes for text
              reading as well, especially one like kafka.

              james.




              From: "Eduard Alf" <yeoman@...>
              Reply-To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
              To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
              Subject: RE: [existlist] Re: the mystery shuts up, and can see and hear no
              more...
              Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 16:12:20 -0400

              "If you can't know every thought and innuendo,
              some of the author's meaning is necessarily hidden
              or 'mysterious."

              that is true, but as james implied, there is point
              at which you have to get off the pot and deal with
              what the author actually said, rather than to try
              to delve forever into the multitude of layers of
              the "mysterious". I do not suggest that there can
              not be a further level of understanding, to either
              accept, reject, or amend the statement. But this
              reduction to absurdity does not provide any
              benefit to the discussion.

              As you say "I can't help but reduce it to the
              absurd...It just happens." I am finding this not
              only frustrating but quite pointless.

              eduard



              -----Original Message-----
              From: nothing@...
              [mailto:nothing@...]
              Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 9:51 AM
              To: existlist@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [existlist] Re: the mystery shuts up, and
              can see and hear no
              more...


              Dear Sir 'Duard simplifier extraordinaire,

              <<I have been following this discussion and this
              has really
              gotten to the point of absurdity.>>

              It always seems to, to me...

              << So what if you cant know every thought and
              innuendo of the
              author...If an author says something in print then
              that is what is
              of importance... All of that is valid and is part
              of the manner in
              which one might take into consideration an
              author's
              pronouncements, but surely "mystery" with respect
              to the author
              is going too far.>>

              If you can't know every thought and innuendo, some
              of the
              author's meaning is necessarily hidden or
              'mysterious.' As
              words are perhaps sometimes adequate -- yet more
              often
              inexact vehicles of meaning (we have examined this
              before in
              color -- where you said red was red, but I pointed
              out that red is
              not inate, it is a measure which someone -- or
              some group of
              someones -- decided on, and which there can be
              variance from
              in experience. Of course none of that set you
              wavering). And
              further, meaning...is it entirely the author's, or
              is it flecked with
              hints of other things the author has read and
              experienced and/or
              heard -- whether directly attributable or not? And
              then might word
              choice be affected, at times containing the
              author's meaning,
              and at others containing internal referants --
              which perhaps even
              the author may be unaware? (And I will do us all
              the favor of not
              getting into genetic transfer of thought,
              experience and idea.)

              Quite honestly I wish I could take everything as
              cut and dried and
              hang it all neatly on my clothes-line. But to
              pretend I know what
              the author meant is pretentious -- even if I do a
              very long study of
              his work, life, etc.. The only thing I can think I
              know is what I think
              I am reading, and how my experience reflects on my
              interpretation of what it seems to me the author
              was doing, and
              even that may be pushing it (depending on how
              absurd you want
              to get). and in the long run, what of the thing
              which the author
              meant? Perhaps the writing has meaning for me
              which is far
              more interesting than whatever the intent was (if
              either of those
              can be defined). Should I shun what I think and
              seek out the idea
              of the author which I can never attain? And should
              I attain it
              (though I think it impossible) there I have
              grabbed the flag on the
              mountain, and no one cares, knows, agrees or even
              acknowledges...so the purpose is exactly what? Why
              is the
              author important at all?

              I can't help but reduce it to the absurd...It just
              happens.

              Reduxio
              -----------


              ------------------------ Yahoo! Groups

              Our Home: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/existlist
              (Includes community book list, chat, and more.)

              TO UNSUBSCRIBE from this group, send an email to:
              existlist-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com

              Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
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            • Eduard Alf
              hi james, the fact is what the author puts forth as his/her opinion. You may wish to make an interpretation of
              Message 6 of 29 , Sep 5, 2001
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                hi james,

                << there are no facts, only interpretations>>

                the "fact" is what the author puts forth as
                his/her opinion. You may wish to make an
                interpretation of this opinion or accept/reject it
                outright. But ultimately, one has to come the
                point of recognizing that this opinion is
                something which is attached to the author. It is
                the author's opinion and on that basis can be
                taken to be a "fact". The discussion had gotten
                off onto a tangent, in trying to focus upon some
                "mystery" behind the fact or perhaps some yet
                unknown characteristic of the author which may
                help us to understand this "fact".

                I do not disagree with the idea that one should
                get to know the author. This may indeed be
                beneficial understanding facts/opinions that may
                be stated in the form of parables. But the
                tangent that we got on, was that there could never
                be an understanding, because instead we would be
                too busy trying to find out more and more about
                the mystery. This leads to absurdity.

                eduard
              • nothing@theabsurd.com
                ... I find this a claustrophobic situation, limiting, and horrifically disinteresting. If this were made law, I would never read again. ... I do. I don t see
                Message 7 of 29 , Sep 6, 2001
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                  > the "fact" is what the author puts forth as
                  > his/her opinion. You may wish to make an
                  > interpretation of this opinion or accept/reject it
                  > outright. But ultimately, one has to come the
                  > point of recognizing that this opinion is
                  > something which is attached to the author. >>

                  I find this a claustrophobic situation, limiting, and horrifically
                  disinteresting. If this were made law, I would never read again.

                  > I do not disagree with the idea that one should
                  > get to know the author. >>

                  I do. I don't see the point or benefit. Except in satisfying an
                  interest or curiosity -- if you have it.

                  > But the tangent that we got on, was that there could never
                  > be an understanding, because instead we would be
                  > too busy trying to find out more and more about
                  > the mystery. This leads to absurdity.

                  There is nothing wrong with admitting to the impossible.

                  What I think many fail with and why they continually search to
                  something else is that they find their perspective and interest not
                  good enough and not well justified on its own. For some reason
                  it needs validation. Validation can be saught by capturing what
                  the author meant as that is the ultimate is it not? I suggest it isn't.
                  And I suggest I can add far more to a work without the limitation
                  of the author as 'god' having devine right over meaning.

                  I think the need for security in 'vision' is what forces so many to
                  find an umbrella...and there consistently miss the joys of the
                  rain.

                  unthinking.
                  ---------------
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